Saturday, June 15, 2013

W.W.C.I.I.T.M.I. Post 6: Lady Gaga

This is a series dedicated to women who despite success in the U.S. Music Industry, have est. a very complicated image for themselves.

Round 6 of this series goes to current avante-garde pop superstar, fashion icon and/or bulls-eye, LGBT Rights phenom and batshit insane "mother monster", Lady Gaga.

Gaga started off as Stefani Germanotta; a bullied kid with a penchant for music living in NYC. Recent footage courtesy of random YouTube videos revealed that Stefani would accept just about anything to be in the spotlight; from an appearance in an episode of the hitman HBO sitcom The Sopranos to being one of the losing contestants on the MTV prank show Boiling Points.
Musically, her burgeoning career would start with a band she assumed the role of lead singer. After playing at famed NYC venues such as The Bitter End and The Mercury Lounge for long enough, she eventually caught the eye of a music producer that helped the band release 2 EP's. Cut to after the band breaks up and Stefani would meet one of her first major collaborative partners, Rob Fusari [who supposedly named her "Lady Gaga" after an autocorrect fuck-up]. Their efforts eventually landed her a deal with Def Jam records when future X Factor U.S. judge for 2 seasons, L.A. Reid was head of the label. Her deal with the label went South after only 3 months, but that wasn't the end of her.
After a Lollapalooza stint with Lady Starlight, it would be Akon (Yes, the "Konvict; music" Akon) that would be the reason Lady Gaga existed as she would be signed to a boutique label under Interscope (Like a play within a play scheme a la Hamlet; or if you hated high school English "a taco within a taco inside a crunchy beef burrito inside a Taco Bell inside a Taco Bell/KFC that's inside your dreams!")

Cut to her breakout debut effort, The Fame. "Just Dance" would jump start a kickass career (And sadly be the last relevant thing Colby O'Donis had been apart of; VH1 die-hards insist I include "Brooke Knows Best" but they can fuck off.) but I admit...I wouldn't be fully convinced of Gaga's singing potential until the last song released from the album. "Poker Face" would become one of the most infectious singles of 2009 and of the 00s. "LoveGame" would introduce the public to her "disco stick" [which despite the blatant innuendo, actually refers to a dancing cane as an apparatus for choreography.] However, the song that convinced me of her talent was "Paparazzi". Her outfit and singing ability had me mesmerized as to how a woman that crazy could have actually made waves in the U.S. Music Industry w/o jokes of Iceland being made. (Hello, Bjork! My teacups have wings too!)
Peaking at #2 aside, Gaga's fashion in a way helped album sales...and started the shit talking against her [and what makes her one of many W.W.C.I.I.T.M.I. to this day.] By the time "Paparazzi" rolled around, the est. consensus outside of her singing was only this; "bitch be crazy!" A poncho/dress thing made of Kermit the Frog puppets; a "bubble dress" and really anything you can look up on Google Images on your own time.

Cut to around late 2009; the time her EP, The Fame Monster would be released. The EP's lead single, "Bad Romance", would be made into one of the most viral YouTube music videos in the history of the website (Moments before some other dumb song by He Who Inspired Lesbians Who Look Like Justin Bieber and years before people would be subjected to "Gangnam Style" & anybody else's version of the "Harlem Shake".) *Fun fact: apparently, gay porn actor turned struggling "legit" actor Brent Corrigan made an appearance in the video as one of Gaga's bidders*

Then, in 2010 she released one of the more commercially successful collaborations in recent memory; the fabulously tacky and campy "Telephone" ft. Beyoncé. This would mark their second collaboration as Gaga had been featured for Beyoncé's "sext-iest" song ever, "Video Phone" [which if listened to more than once on purpose in a group setting will lead to being a registered sex offender; and I base that on absolutely nothing : P]  The video for "Telephone" would be Gaga's wackiest...that day. She and Bey play 2 women out to kill a man that had been a misogynistic dick-bag to Bey *Fun Fact: some band I never heard of [Semi-Precious Weapons] were featured as deceased diners poisoned by Gaga and Bey after they had killed the dick-bag.* They drive the Pussy Wagon from Kill Bill and Jai Rodriguez [of Queer Eye for The Straight Guy fame] plays a newscaster and the two re-enact [sort of] some scene from Thelma & Louise.

Her 3rd single from the EP, "Alejandro", solidified her crazy but would begin the ugly accusations of her being a Madonna knock-off. Apparently, only "Madge" can adorably cause the Catholic Church to have their panties in a goddamn sheepknot. The comparisons between the two had been longstanding ever since Gaga had existed as she was. Jaded gay men from the 80s in a way refuse to give Gaga full credit just because Madonna has been in the industry longer.

I'm now compelled to remind everybody this; just because you're the first to do something doesn't mean you'll be the best at what you do. Yes, Madonna was first at reinventing herself every time an album would be released, but for the love of God she is not the best. "Madge" had the cone bra; Gaga had a bra that shot out sparks of fire! "Alejandro" drew out needless criticism because critics likened the adorable blasphemy of Gaga ingesting a rosary to Madonna kissing the feet of a black man playing Jesus. Though the "comparisons" would only grow uglier when her next major album would be released.

After making award show history with her "meat dress" and having Chad Michaels...err Cher hold her accompanying "meat purse", Gaga's next effort Born This Way, drew a shitload of criticism. The album cover art was read the house down into the cement; most of the music videos for the singles would be read to filth, but none worse than the lead single and title track.
"Born This Way" in a sense started the "self confidence anthems" that others in the industry [such as Ke$ha, Katy Perry and P!nk to name a few] would soon use. "BTW" would be a pop version of an "It's OK to be gay" theme song. Though the song would be read to filth for 2 reasons:

1. Some people took a sort of understandable offense to the terms "Orient" and "Chola" being thrown in the song. In a way, I understand that nothing that colloquial and prejudiced sounding should be overshadowing the "It's OK to be gay" aspect of the song.

2. Jaded and tone deaf fuckwads alike claimed the song "ripped off" Madonna's "Express Yourself". Even Madonna decided to be a bitch about it in an interview and call the sample "reductive". Keep in mind this is the same Madonna that did a song with Nicki Minaj and performed alongside LMFAO in the Superbowl. The bitch has no license commenting on anything reductive with that shit and American Life in her repertoire.

As if the song itself drew needless criticism on that end, people actually had the nerve saying that the exaggerated gap in her teeth for the video was a shameless rip-off of Madonna's exaggerated gap in her teeth. Gaga set the record straight saying that she had a gap in her teeth that had people making fun of her/when she was younger. However, the shit kept hitting the fan.

When her next song "Judas" was released, it drew more of the religious iconography blaspheming that "Alejandro" had. Then "The Edge of Glory" was released and admittedly the song itself wasn't read for filth. The video for it on the other hand was. Compared to her other videos then, "The Edge of Glory" looked lackadaisical and really half assed. It got to where even longtime choreographer for Gaga [and she who had seen Diddy at his goddamn worse], Laurieann "Boom Kack" Gibson even expressed discontent for the final product making reference to a Google Chrome commercial featuring the song [and kickass footage of Gaga's most devoted "Little Monsters"] as a better music video choice for the song.
Then "You and I" would be released and read for only having a "mermaid sex scene" but be received as one of Gaga's best songs to date.

As of now, her latest effort ARTPOP is slated for a release sometime this year. So how has "Mother Monster" kept busy?

For starters, she's made Fashion Police easy for the show's panelists; she's modeled for high end brands, released her perfume Fame *Fun Fact: Fame was the first perfume that was black in its liquidized form* and has a role in the new Robert Rodriguez film Machete Kills.
However, her LGBT rights activism and advocating is her most famous non-musical venture. She even has her own non-profit organization, the Born This Way Foundation, dedicated to bettering the lives of bullied youth and teens LGBT or not. Remember the "meat dress"? Turns out that was a way of advocating for LGBT rights [meaning if we don't stand up, we'll be no more free than the meat on our bones.]
She even chipped in her 2 cents over general immigration rights [which actually inspired the BTW song "Americano"] by criticizing the U.S. immigration laws in a tour stop in Mexico.

So how does a woman with her head on her shoulders, kickass vocals and someone with Gaga's awesome image stand in the line of W.W.C.I.I.T.M.I.? To be quite honest, it's the jaded fuckwads who refuse to give her credit because of Madonna's existence. Two words right now: FUCK Madonna. The bitch can't sing unlike Gaga who could sing amoebas around the bitch until her next world tour announcement. Yes, "Madge" made reinventing images a staple for pop artists today, but that doesn't mean she should be held to an ivory tower to sneer at Gaga.

Apart from the constant fuckery thrown by Madonna fans, Gaga's antics are a bit baffling. The most baffling? "The egg" entrance at the Grammys. Technically, Gaga was "incubating" inside [and it made sense as the upcoming album at the time was Born This Way]. Runner up for most baffling moment? Her male alter-ego "Jo Calderone"; the male Gaga in the "You and I" video filling in for her at the 2011 VMAs. Word is she even wore a strapon dildo so she could really be committed to the character.
Also, add stupid rumors of being a hermaphrodite and being in the same illuminati bullshit as Beyoncé and damn near every other pop star right now and that's what makes Lady Gaga one of many W.W.C.I.I.T.M.I.

Next up; the woman who ended up being Russell Brand's Teenage Dream come true (And no I'm not talking Florence Welch).

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